This enactment amends the Canada Elections Act to require that, where a political party has an electoral district association in a riding, a prospective candidate for the riding must have their nomination papers signed by the chief executive officer and by one board member of the electoral district association in order to stand as that party’s candidate.
Whereas, since 1970, the Canada Elections Act has established the formal roles and responsibilities of political parties and their leaders in federal elections, including the requirement that the leader of a political party or their designated representative sign the nomination papers for a prospective candidate;
Whereas this requirement was originally intended to ensure that the prospective candidate was properly authorized by that party, but has subsequently been used by party leaders to exert power over prospective candidates, as well as elected Members of Parliament, and to overrule the preferences of local electoral district associations;
And whereas this requirement, insofar as it gives party leaders the power to refuse to allow a sitting Member of Parliament to be a candidate for that party in a future election, is being used as an undemocratic tool for discipline and control over Members and, as such, thwarts the will and interests of both the Member and their constituents and threatens the integrity of Canadian democracy;
Now, therefore, Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:
1. This Act may be cited as the Democratic Local Nomination Act.
2000, c. 9
CANADA ELECTIONS ACT
2. Paragraph 67(4)(c) of the Canada Elections Act is replaced by the following:
(c) an instrument in writing
(i) that is signed by the chief executive officer and by one board member of the political party’s electoral district association for the electoral district in which the prospective candidate is seeking nomination and that states that the prospective candidate is endorsed by that electoral district association to stand as that party’s candidate in accordance with section 68, or
(ii) that, if a political party does not have an electoral district association in the relevant electoral district before the beginning of the election period, is signed by the leader of the political party or by a person referred to in subsection 383(2) and that states that the prospective candidate is endorsed by the party in accordance with section 68.
3. Subsection 383(2) of the Act is replaced by the following:
Endorsement of candidates
(2) A registered party and an eligible party, whose electoral district associations endorse candidates in their electoral districts at a general election in accordance with subparagraph 67(4)(c)(i) or whose leader has designated a representative to endorse candidates at a general election in the circumstances described in subparagraph 67(4)(c)(ii), shall include with the statement or report referred to in subsection (1) a statement certified by its leader that sets out the names of the designated representatives.